In my journey to find the optimal diet, not for weight loss, but for health, I’ve tried a wide variety of diets, from vegan to paleo. Over time, through trial and error, as well as careful observation, I’ve found the optimal diet for me. However, I don’t recommend it to my clients. Why? Because I believe that there is no one optimal diet for everyone.
Yes, you can find studies that suggest that either a vegetarian or low-carb “paleo” diet are beneficial, but the seeming conflicts between these studies actually contain the one and only truism about nutrition: Diets that have less refined carbs and more whole fruits and vegetables tend to result in better health outcomes. Any other nutrition claim that is made can be easily refuted.
Whether or not to eat meat, then, becomes more of a moral and ecological debate, and much like the nutritional debate, there is an army of evidence on either side. My personal viewpoint is that everyone should strive to produce the highest quality proteins they can afford. Whether that is organic locally made tofu from the bulk bins, or grass-fed beef in compostable wrap, is up to the individual.
Through the process of becoming an intuitive eater, you may discover that sometimes fresh fish feels most nourishing, and on another day, a warm bowl of bean soup feels best. I encourage you to trust yourself, experiment, and honor your inner wisdom, while taking lightly the nutritional opinions of others. You are the only person capable of determining the best diet for you.